Solstice 2017 – not much about bees

Happy Solstice to all from Brookfield Farm Bees And Honey here in Maple Falls, Washington.  The entire family gets behind the return of longer days here in the Cascade foothills.  To celebrate most of us go for a walk in the woods to pick out our Solstice Foliage.

Stepping out on solstice day








Did I mention that the “family” includes dogs, goats, and cats?

Checking out the options











Of course it’s the goats who become totally involved in the choice.

We want the best tree.











Some feel cedar is the right spirit (or taste).

Sampling the Cedar











Others think a hemlock bough carries the day best

Some prefer a hemlock











Then there is the minimalist in the group: no greenery, just the bare beauty of wood.

Our minimalist











As in all holiday gatherings, some family members become bored after a bit.

Some Grow Bored

Then there are those who prefer to just wait and have it brought to them.  The “did anyone mention how cold it is out there” group.

Staying Warm, Not Moving













Bring me something nice, now











After the usual holiday squabbles, banging of heads, a bit of barking, and the human yelling “Don’t eat that. It’s for Solstice!”, we made it home. Long stored decorations were pulled out, and everyone except the house cat lost interest because, well, they can’t eat it until New Years Day.

The Final Choice

As for the bees, they are clustered up in their hives.

Solstice Day









A bit about bees (I promised)

I do not bother my bees in the winter.  It’s too cold.  They’ve been left ample honey (1.5 supers), and pollen (1 super).  They’ll be checked in February, when we normally get a brief break in the cold.  But that check only involves lifting the top and seeing if they’ve reached the top or if they have honey left.  If they’re at the top, they will get some bee candy.  With luck they’ll come out happy and healthy in the new year raring to reproduce and make honey.

That’s the news from Brookfield Farm Bees And Honey, in Maple Falls Washington.  So far the winter has been mild compared to last year (thank goodness), but it’s only the beginning of winter here – three months to go.

I have no idea why wordpress is formatting this in such an odd way, but I gave up trying to understand the internet years ago.

Happy Solstice To All from all the creatures at the Farm.

About Bean

I am the beekeeper at Brookfield Farm Bees And Honey, near Maple Falls, Washington. My bees fly from naturally treated, antibiotic-free hives in the foothills of Mt. Baker (the second most glaciated volcano in Washington). I sell the raw honey my bees make, as well as honey produced by Washington beekeepers who are friends - the emphasis is on raw honey from naturally treated, antibiotic-free hives. I also make and sell Beeswax Salves. You can find me at the Ballard Farmers' Market in Seattle on Sundays from 10-3. When not with the bees, you'll most likely meet me up some mountain trail, pinhole camera and digital camera slung over my shoulders, and my pack goats trailing behind me.
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